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Density Meter – Hidden Locations Where Contraband Is Found

Density Meter – Hidden Locations Where Contraband Is Found

Campbell/Harris Security Equipment Company (CSECO) has been manufacturing the world’s first density meter and contraband detector, the Buster K910B Density Meter, for over 30 years.

This density meter, also known as the Buster, can help interdiction officers and other law enforcement agencies detect the presence of contraband, even in many areas that are commonly inaccessible. Examples of contraband include narcotics, many types of drugs (illegal or legally prescribed), currency, weapons, jewelry, and even explosives. Food items and cigarettes can also be considered contraband if they are being smuggled.

One of the most common places smugglers stash contraband is in a vehicle such as a car, truck or van. There are many parts of a vehicle that smugglers can hide items in a sly manner so that law enforcement agents may overlook them. At least that’s what their hope is. With the CSECO density meter and other contraband detection tools, that likelihood is greatly diminished.

There are compartments in a vehicle that are intrinsic, meaning the compartments may not be seen by the naked eye but are a natural part of a vehicle. On the other hand, there are some compartments that are considered false or fake, meaning that the compartment is not a natural part of a vehicle and was specifically created to hide contraband.

Here are just some areas in a vehicle that have been use as a hiding place for contraband:

  1. Wheels and tires
    A wheel has a natural space that can be easily made into a false compartment to hide hidden contraband. Smugglers used to think that law enforcement officers overlook wheels and tires — particularly spare tires – because they weren’t easy to check. The Buster allowed officers to detect if spare tires were used to conceal and transport contraband. One of the old reliable detecting methods is by tapping on the tires. If they sound hollow then its good indication contraband is not hidden there. Unfortunately, smugglers have learned to weld steel compartments to the inner part of a wheel the vehicle is actually rolling on. With a density meter like the Buster, interdiction officers will be able to locate contraband inside wheels and spare tires in just seconds.
  2. Bumpers
    The front and rear bumpers of a car are also favorite areas for smugglers and drug traffickers. Since there is very little space in a bumper, smugglers are sure that officers will overlook them. But they’re mistaken. Using the Buster with the Perfect Vision V20 Videoscope enables officers to detect the presence of contraband even in bumpers.
  3. The car seat
    The car seat is also used frequently for drug traffickers and smugglers because they are able to make a hidden compartment either under or behind it. Smugglers are certain that interdiction officers will overlook the backseat, but officers will check any space in the car seat, particularly between the seat and the trunk. The Buster makes your search for the hidden contraband in this particular area easy and if there is contraband hidden, you can be sure it will detect it.
  4. Doors
    Doors are often a hiding place for smugglers and drug traffickers because they can stash big bundles of narcotics or currency, for example. They can take out the inside plastic cover, stash the contraband, and put the cover back in place. A way of checking for the presence of contraband is to roll down the car windows. If they cannot be rolled down smoothly, something may be hidden inside the doors. K-9 units can also detect contraband by smelling it. Reliable, accurate contraband detection tools such as the Buster are a foolproof way of detecting contraband inside car doors.
  5. Rocker panels and fender
    Smugglers have used this space for hiding contraband for many years. You can get an idea if contraband might be hidden in these areas by inspecting the bond on the fenders in the engine area to see if any trip wires or paint has been freshly applied. Using a density meter like the Buster will help you accurately detect where the contraband is hidden.
  6. Gas tanks
    The fuel tank is another favorite place for smugglers to hide contraband, as it is a natural compartment. The smuggler removes the bolt of the gas tank from the car, hides well-wrapped contraband inside, and then attaches the tank onto the vehicle again. However, a trained interdiction officer may notice the sign that the tank has been removed from the vehicle.
  7. Floors
    The floor has compartments that may be natural or artificial in nature. This is another favored place for drug traffickers to hide contraband. Sheet metal can be installed on top of the existing flooring, resembling a factory floor. Trained law enforcement officers will see right away if the flooring is higher than usual, even just by an inch — it is a tell-tale sign that contraband may be lined under it.
  8. Dashboard
    Smugglers often stuff contraband inside the dashboard, which can be fitted with false compartments. The air conditioner compartments also must not be overlooked because it can also be used to hide contraband.
  9. Undercarriage
    Smugglers weld steel boxes or other receptacles to a vehicle’s undercarriage. If you suspect that contraband is hidden in the undercarriage, you can use the Buster’s optional telescoping pole making the product the Buster-on-a-Stick.

Many of these compartments mentioned are natural, meaning there is a natural void or space created during the manufacturing process. The Buster will detect sudden changes in density, an indication that contraband may be hidden in these natural voids in the vehicle.

The Buster K910B Density Meter uses the latest technology – a low intensity gamma radiation emitter and scintillation detector — and ergonomic design that allows for thorough, quick, and convenient inspection. Other contraband detection tools using millimeter wave, microwave, ultra-violet or radio wave cannot provide fast and accurate results like the Buster can. Unlike other density meters, the Buster can scan many types of surface — including most parts of a vehicle — and can detect several kinds of contraband.

For more amazing features of the Buster K910B Density Meter, you can contact CSECO by phone at 510-864-8010 or email at

Tony Harris, President and CEO, and Pat Campbell, founder, of CSECO explain about the Buster density meter and other contraband detectors.

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